Learn why playful learning is so important in Finnish yearly childhood education
There is a lot of talk about Finnish Education System worldwide. What are the three pillars of this system, that make it so special? Education in Finland is comprised of the following key principles:
- EduCare Model
- Children’s Participation
Play has a significant role in Finnish Early Childhood pedagogy, as it unites principles of children’s participation and EduCare models. It is a key activity for children, that helps them to explore the world in their own holistic way by using imagination, trying different social roles etc. Play helps children to build up social, life, physical, problem-solving, cognitive skills, to be creative and develop their personalities.
An important value of play was mentioned by many philosophers, psychologists, and education specialists. For example, Eugen Fink and Hans-Georg Gadamer determined ontological status of play as essential part of human existence, that helps people to understand their essence and their own role in society (1,2). Milda Brėdikytė claimed that joint play with children helps adults to follow children’s logic and understand them better (3).
Finnish Education System is based on learning conception that emphasises children’s social interaction and admits that learning is holistic and “combines knowledge, skills, actions, emotions, sensory perceptions, bodily experiences, language and thinking” (4)
In Finland children play in small groups. It gives ECEC teachers opportunity to observe and listen to every child and therefore it encourages children’s activity and participation. It helps ECEC teachers to learn more about every child and to use this information while creating individual child development plan. Hujala claims that playful learning approach helps child to become an active actor in the centre of the curriculum (4).
Finnish National Core Curriculum for ECEC gives a freedom for its highly qualified education specialists to use different learning forms, including playful learning methods.
Finland International Education together with authors of “Playful Learning in Early Childhood Education in Finland” book did a great job by collecting and inventing dozens of playful learning activities for children, describing HOW to play and WHAT learning outcomes these activities lead to.
Therefore, by becoming our partner or buying our “Playful Learning” book you can get ready activities for children and tips how to realize them.
1. E. Fink. Play as Symbol of the World. And Other Writings. Indiana University Press, 2016.
2. H-G. Gadamer. Truth and Method. 1st English ed., 1975.
3. M. Brėdikytė. Adult play guidance and children's play development in a narrative play-world. European Early Childhood Education Research Journal, p. 213-225, 2013/6/1.
4. Hujala, E., Helenius, A. & Hyvönen, P. (2010). Play for learning and transition to school. In M. Ebbeck & M. Waniganayake (Eds.), Children’s play in early childhood education: Facilitating learning in diverse contexts (pp. 89–102). Australia: Oxford University Press.